The Republic of Singapore is an island city-state located off the southern tip of the Malay Peninsula. Originally inhabited by the indigenous Orang Laut people, Singapore became a British colony in 1819.
Singapore was occupied by Japan during World War II, but was returned to Britain after the war. It gained independence in the 1950s, briefly became part of the Federation of Malaysia, but seceded and gained permanent sovereignty in 1965.
By early 1943, with British fortunes turning for the better in Europe, more attention was turned to the Pacific Ocean, and the Royal Air Force had retaken the offensive, bombing Singapore. This embarrassing raid was kept hidden from those living under Japanese rule, and even the commanders occupying Hawaii.
In 1941, the Japanese were encroaching into Indochina which threatened BritishMalaya and Singapore. Despite Winston Churchill's protests, Japan continued its aggressive behavior and before the year was out, they invaded Malaya and the Philippines. The British stood siege but were forced to surrender Singapore and its defenders the following February.
The Island of Singapore was a major naval base for the Royal Navy in the Pacific when the Great War began in 1914. After the fall of the Sandwich Islands, it became the prime base for the RN Pacific Squadron for the duration of the war, and the ensuing peace afterwards.
In 1943, Japan betrayed its allies and with Siamese assistance, captured Singapore as well as several other British colonies, extending the Japanese domination of East Asia.
Liz Mendoza thought it ridiculous that people would fight and die for tiny "countries" like The Valley and Westside, until she remembered that similar nation-states had fought similar wars in the common history shared by the home timeline and the Valley-Westside alternate. Singapore was one of the nations that entered her thoughts.
Singapore was the prime naval base of the Royal Navy in the Pacific. It was a major trading port and seen as the pride of the empire in the Far East. In January 1941, Japan attacked the British Empire in the Pacific, by invading Malaya. By the fall of 1941, the Malaya Command had lost control of the peninsula, and had been forced back into Singapore, where it made preparations for a siege.
Singapore fell to Japan in short order. The Japanese held Singapore into 1944.